Chris HoffmanEditor-in-Chief

Chris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He"s written about technology for over a decade và was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The New York Times, been interviewed as a giải pháp công nghệ expert on TV stations like Miami"s NBC 6, & had his work covered by news outlets lượt thích the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have been read nearly one billion times---and that"s just here at How-To Geek. Read more...

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UpdatedAug 9, 2017, 5:55 pm EDT| 4 min read

You may have misplaced a Wi-Fi password, but your máy vi tính probably remembers it if you’ve sầu connected in the past. If not, you can always grab the password from your router itself or remix the Wi-Fi passphrase and set a new one.

These tricks allow you khổng lồ recover the passphrase to lớn any network that your laptop can connect to. You can then easily log into lớn those networks from other devices or mô tả the password with your friends. In case your máy tính xách tay is not connected—or you don’t have one—we’ll also show you how to find or reset the password in your router’s admin interface.

Recover the Password From a Laptop

If you’ve connected to lớn the network in the past, the easiest way to lớn vị this is to lớn grab the password from a computer that’s currently connected khổng lồ it. Both Windows PCs and Macs make it easy to see your saved Wi-Fi passphrases. You can’t easily find saved Wi-Fi passphrases on other devices. Doing this on Android requires root access, và doing this on an iPhone or iPad requires jailbreaking. However, if you’re using iCloud Keychain sync, Wi-Fi passwords from your iOS device may sync lớn your Mac, where you can access them.

RELATED: How lớn View That Forgotten Wireless Network Password in Windows

To view a saved Wi-Fi password on Windows, open the danh mục of wireless networks in the Control Panel — you can quickly vì this by pressing Windows Key + R, typing ncpa.cpl inlớn the box, & pressing Enter. Right-clichồng a saved Wi-Fi network, select Status, and click the “Wireless Properties” button. Cliông xã over to lớn the Security tab và kiểm tra the “Show characters” box to lớn view the saved Wi-Fi password. You must have administrator access to lớn the computer to lớn view this information.


lưu ý that this only works if your Windows máy vi tính is currently connected lớn the Wi-Fi network in question. And it needs to lớn be actively connected—not just have sầu the network in its menu of past connections. If the máy vi tính is not connected, you won’t see the “Wireless Properties” button at all in the “Wi-Fi Status” window.

RELATED: How to Recover a Forgotten Wi-Fi Password in OS X

To recover a saved Wi-Fi password on a Mac, open the “Keychain Access” tiện ích. Press Command+Space, type “Keychain Access,” & then hit Enter. Select the “Passwords” category and look for the name of the Wi-Fi network. It appears as an “AirPort network password.” You can right-cliông chồng the network name, and then select the “Copy password lớn clipboard” option. Or, you can right-click the name, select “Get Info,” & then kiểm tra the “Show password” box. You’ll have sầu to enter your Mac’s username and password to lớn view this information—và it’ll only work if your trương mục is an administrator trương mục.


Unlượt thích in Windows, you don’t have sầu khổng lồ be actively connected lớn the Wi-Fi network khổng lồ see the password on your Mac. You can kiểm tra out the password for any Wi-Fi network khổng lồ which you’ve previously connected.

Find the Password On Your Router

You can potentially view the Wi-Fi passphrase on your router, too. Assuming you can’t connect to the router’s Wi-Fi, you can always directly connect a laptop to your router via a wired Ethernet cable. Or, if you already have a desktop PC connected to lớn the router via an Ethernet cable, that will vì.

Find your router’s IP. address and sign in khổng lồ its web interface. If you’re lượt thích most people, you never changed the sign in credentials from the default setting. You can find the default username & password for your router in the manual or with a quichồng web tìm kiếm.

RELATED: 10 Useful Options You Can Configure In Your Router"s Web Interface

Also, many modern routers—especially routers provided by your Internet service provider—now come with random passphrases quality khổng lồ your device. Look on your router for a Wi-Fi passphrase printed on a sticker. Of course, this only works if you haven’t changed from the mặc định password.


In your router’s web interface, head to lớn the Wi-Fi settings and look for the Wi-Fi password. If your router gives you the option to see the password, then you’ve got what you need. Otherwise, you can just change the password và then connect using the new one. And if you change the password, you’ll need to lớn update it on every device that connects to your wireless network.


Reset Your Router & Its Wi-Fi Password

RELATED: How lớn Access Your Router If You Forget the Password

if you’re locked out of your router—perhaps you can’t remember its administration password—you can always rephối your router khổng lồ its factory default settings. You just need physical access khổng lồ the router. All your router’s custom settings will be wiped, meaning you’ll have to phối up your Wi-Fi again, along with anything else you’ve customized. But, the sign in credentials are also reset khổng lồ their defaults, so at least you’ll be able khổng lồ sign in.

Generally, you vì this by locating a “Reset” button somewhere on the router, It’s often a pinhole-sized button and you may need a straightened paperclip or similar small, narrow object lớn press it. You usually need to press the button down for ten seconds or so. After that, your router restarts, wiping all its custom settings & restoring the default ones. You can mix it up from scratch, so it doesn’t matter if you don’t know the Wi-Fi passphrase or anything else about the router.


Perkhung a web search for router-specific instructions or find your router’s manual before doing this. You’ll find instructions that explain exactly how lớn reset your router và how to lớn mix it up from scratch afterwards, complete with the default sign in credentials you’ll need khổng lồ get inkhổng lồ the router’s admin interface.

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And rethành viên, after resetting your router và selecting a new Wi-Fi password, you’ll need khổng lồ update that password on every device that connects to your wireless network.

Image Credit: William Hook on Flickr

Chris HoffmanChris Hoffman is Editor-in-Chief of How-To Geek. He"s written about giải pháp công nghệ for over a decade và was a PCWorld columnist for two years. Chris has written for The Thủ đô New York Times, been interviewed as a technology expert on TV stations like Miami"s NBC 6, và had his work covered by news outlets like the BBC. Since 2011, Chris has written over 2,000 articles that have sầu been read nearly one billion times---& that"s just here at How-To Geek. Read Full Bio »